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Midnight Movie by Tobe Hooper: A Book Review
I Can't Get Enough Horror Fiction
Ever since I was a little girl, I have had an insatiable thirst for horror films. No matter how bad, how cheesy, or how terrifying; if there was a scary movie on, I just had to watch it. When I was around ten or twelve, my love of the macabre branched out to include novels. Horror fiction is one of the few things from childhood I never outgrew. It's a wee bit abnormal, but what can I say? Reading poetry just doesn't do it for me.
Recently, I stumbled upon a gem of a read called Midnight Movie. It's not fresh off the press; the copyright is 2011, and I can't recall how, or where, I heard about it. It was written by Tobe Hooper with help from Alan Goldsher. If you're not familiar with the author, he wrote and directed one of the greatest films of all time: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). Surely you've heard of it. Goldsher is a novelist and celebrity ghostwriter. His novels include Paul is Undead: The British Zombie Invasion and My Favorite Fangs: The Story of the Von Trapp Family Vampires.
Review and Brief Summary
How can I sum up this book? Gross, cheesy, hilarious, obscene, over-the-top, gory, violent, sick, twisted, disturbing, vulgar, absurd, revolting and crude. All in one book; what more could anyone ask for? It's not for the faint of heart or the easily grossed out. There's a lot of swearing, sex, and gore.
This book is wickedly entertaining. Hooper manages to combine a few different types of cliched themes (zombies and a mysterious viral outbreak, for instance) and breathe new life into what's been done over and over and over again. It's written as a documentary, with the author putting himself at the center of the story.
I'll try to outline the plot without giving too much away; no spoiler alerts necessary. As a teenager, the author wrote and directed a short film and basically forgot about it. Decades later, some dork manages to get his hands on it, so he tracks down Tobe and contacts him. Of course Tobe agrees to meet with said dork, otherwise there wouldn't be a story to tell. They screen the film at a dive bar in Austin, TX. Gradually, those who watched the movie start to experience... interesting side effects. Like what? Well, read the book, and find out for yourself.
Obviously, I highly recommend reading this; I give it 7 out of 10 stars. If you're looking for something to scare you half to death and keep you awake at night, know that this novel is not even going to come close to doing so. However, if you want something purely fun to read that will keep you alternating between laughing out loud and seriously wondering if the author should have his head examined, you will enjoy every page of this book.
"Imagine the creepiest moment from Night of the Living Dead, then multiply that by fifty. Their moans were loud as all get-out, and they all had these oozing sores on their faces..."
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Get to Know the Author
The following interview is focused almost exclusively on The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (it is, after all, his most famous work), and it features Bruce Campbell, John Landis, and Gunnar Hansen. The video is less than eleven minutes, and fans will find it informative and amusing. If you're not a fan, here's your chance to take a look inside the mind of Tobe Hooper and form an opinion.